World Languages Institute
Fort Worth, TX
2018 America’s Best Urban Schools Award Winner
The World Languages Institute mission is to prepare students linguistically, socially and cognitively to lead with creativity and innovation. Students arrive with varying degrees of proficiency in English and Spanish but are immersed in courses in both languages immediately. All students take Latin in sixth and seventh grades to support their language development and have the opportunity to learn a fourth language if they choose. To support students’ learning, teachers incorporate both content and language objectives into lessons that are frequently project-based and hands-on. As well, teachers use a common lesson plan format that includes essential questions, vocabulary, differentiation for diverse learners and methods of assessment. The administrative team audits lesson plans, conducts walkthroughs with particular foci and develops weekly professional development based on data analysis, observations and student work. There is a real team spirit at WLI with emphasis on Tier I instruction, so assistants and support staff including SPED push into classrooms. Professional Learning Communities discuss student work and strengths and weaknesses in their instruction that yielded the outcomes, all in an effort to improve.